On television, an average of 7.317 million total viewers watched the debate live from the campus of Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa. Among adults 25-54, 2.109 million tuned in. The debate peaked on television from 9:30-9:45pm with 7.981 million total viewers.
CNN’s live stream of the CNN Democratic Debate saw 4.0 million live starts on CNN’s platforms (CNN.com, CNNgo on OTT apps & CNN mobile apps for iOS and Android; CNN’s debate was not live streamed on social properties). It was the biggest CNN debate ever for digital live streaming, and the entire day ranked in the Top 5 of all days in the last year.
The digital streams translate to an average audience of 467k total viewers (which is equivalent to how TV ratings are calculated). CNN TV plus digital streaming produced a combined total average audience of 7.784 million total viewers. Digital viewing added a +6.4% lift to CNN TV total viewer average audience, the highest percentage lift on record for a CNN debate.
Notably, on debate day, CNN Digital saw more than 29 million unique multi-platform visitors and 25 million total video starts across its desktop, mobile and OTT devices. The audio of the debate also streamed on CNN’s channels on Amazon Echo, SiriusXM and Westwood One Radio Network.
The two-hour debate (9-11pm, ET) was moderated by CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, anchor The Situation Room, Abby Phillip, CNN political correspondent and Brianne Pfannenstiel, chief political correspondent of The Des Moines Register.
The debate included presidential candidates former Vice President Joe Biden; Mayor Pete Buttigieg (South Bend, IN); Sen. Amy Klobuchar (MN); Sen. Bernie Sanders (VT); businessman Tom Steyer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (MA).